Category Archives: Economics

The unequal struggle between facts and conviction

(featured image credit: stevepb/Pixabay) When we argue on the basis of a conviction, we should be seeking to verify our position, rather than to confirm it “When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, Sir?” This … Continue reading

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Strange excesses: on insurance and probabilities

How insurance can sometimes be a gamble in more than one way Are you a gambler? Let’s not count lottery draws, or even the occasional punt on a horse or the result of a football match. If we exclude these, … Continue reading

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Why are we giving gifts?

(Featured image credit: Peter Dutton CC BY) Lifting the veil over a mysterious custom This is the time of the year when it is obligatory for any piece with even the vaguest reference to Christmas, gifts, or economics to mention … Continue reading

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Don’t be defensive (be surprised)

(featured image credit: Henry Burrows CC BY) We should be pleased when what we observe contradicts what we believe to be true: wisdom arises when the unexpected happens We people are simple at heart. We are of course incredibly complex … Continue reading

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Don’t tell me what you don’t want

When rejecting something is not enough “Tell me what you want, what you really, really want”, the Spice Girls sang in their catchy hit Wannabe, 22 years ago. They were not (to the best of my knowledge) a bunch of … Continue reading

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More power to the imagination

(featured image credit: Motihada) In praise of an underrated and underused mental instrument in decision-making There is more to economics than the economy. Much of human interaction is a form of trading: we give something up, and we get something … Continue reading

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How cold?

(featured image: Ross Dunn CC BY)   When we say something leaves us cold, we don’t always mean absolute zero Last Sunday, the Christmas lights were switched on in my town. This is an annual event, not just here, but … Continue reading

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